Taking N-acetylcysteine (NAC) for COPD: Does it help?

Posted by xm174 @xm174, Jan 22, 2021

Hi everyone,
Does anybody have information on the effectiveness of taking the supplement NAC for helping reduce exacerbations caused by moderate to sever COPD? Any and all feedback would be greatly appreciated.

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the COPD: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Support Group.

@xm174 Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect, a place to give and get support.

You will notice that I added "N-acetylcysteine" to your discussion question. I did this so members like @joelars @waterboy @merpreb @ppr @silverkat
@fiesty76 could more easily find your questions and offer suggestions and/or support.

I'm wondering if you would be interested in journal articles related to your question? I was able to find a few during a quick google search but journal articles are exactly light reading.

I'm also wondering if you have had a chance to read through previous discussions and posts related to COPD?

REPLY

@xm174– Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. That is a great question. We are not in the medical profession so we can not answer questions that deal directly with advice about medications. However, if I were you I would most definitely ask my doctor.

Have your symptoms increased recently? What makes you ask this at this time?

REPLY
@merpreb

@xm174– Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. That is a great question. We are not in the medical profession so we can not answer questions that deal directly with advice about medications. However, if I were you I would most definitely ask my doctor.

Have your symptoms increased recently? What makes you ask this at this time?

Jump to this post

Hi,

I'm just investigating the results people have had with taking the NAC supplement with regards to helping control the frequency and/ or severity of COD exacerbations, particularly in people with stage 3 COPD.

I know an elderly lady who has stage 3 COPD and I am simply doing some investigative work on her behalf, and hoping to hear real life experiences from others with COPD and their results after taking NAC.

I am not seeking actual medical advice, simply feedback from other COPD patients or family members. The patient I'm investigating this on behalf of, has already spoken to their doctor regarding this, and has a medical team devoted to her COPD issue. What I'm looking for is supplemental information, garnered from real life experiences.

Thanks for your interest in my post.

REPLY

@xm174– I understand. You are a good friend. Has she been given any answers from her medical team?

REPLY

Has anyone here had success taking NAC? I’ve read about many lung benefits (better breathing and reduced mucus, long-term). Interested in hearing about others’ experience.

REPLY
@otter2154

Has anyone here had success taking NAC? I’ve read about many lung benefits (better breathing and reduced mucus, long-term). Interested in hearing about others’ experience.

Jump to this post

@otter2154 Below I have linked a Mayo Clinic page related to Acetylcysteine.

Mayo Clinic
– Acetylcysteine (Inhalation Route) https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/acetylcysteine-inhalation-route/description/drg-20061456
https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/acetylcysteine-oral-route/precautions/drg-20311314
https://www.mayoclinicproceedings.org/article/S0025-6196(19)30396-9/abstract

I'm tagging members @silverkat @merpreb @gabrielm @mrbill @waterboy @windwalker @fighter @sistertwo @nla4625 because they have been recently active members of Lung Health and may have information on this topic.

May I ask if you know if insurance covers this medication?

REPLY
@erikas

@otter2154 Below I have linked a Mayo Clinic page related to Acetylcysteine.

Mayo Clinic
– Acetylcysteine (Inhalation Route) https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/acetylcysteine-inhalation-route/description/drg-20061456
https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/acetylcysteine-oral-route/precautions/drg-20311314
https://www.mayoclinicproceedings.org/article/S0025-6196(19)30396-9/abstract

I'm tagging members @silverkat @merpreb @gabrielm @mrbill @waterboy @windwalker @fighter @sistertwo @nla4625 because they have been recently active members of Lung Health and may have information on this topic.

May I ask if you know if insurance covers this medication?

Jump to this post

I’m not sure. I have good insurance (after the deductible), so probably yes. Mostly, I was wondering about the NAC supplements (pills) you get at the store (or from Amazon).

REPLY
@otter2154

Has anyone here had success taking NAC? I’ve read about many lung benefits (better breathing and reduced mucus, long-term). Interested in hearing about others’ experience.

Jump to this post

@otter2154 I have used N-acetyl cysteine before. It's good for breaking up mucus and a immune booster. Everyone is different, doesn't hurt to give it a try. I'm not sure what medications or supplements you are taking- so maybe ask you doctor if there are any contraindication before hand. Try not to introduce to many things at one time, it will be hard to determine what is helping and what is not.

REPLY
@fracturedd

@otter2154 I have used N-acetyl cysteine before. It's good for breaking up mucus and a immune booster. Everyone is different, doesn't hurt to give it a try. I'm not sure what medications or supplements you are taking- so maybe ask you doctor if there are any contraindication before hand. Try not to introduce to many things at one time, it will be hard to determine what is helping and what is not.

Jump to this post

I’ve recently started mucinex 1200 mg twice a day (with lots of water) and I’ll stick with this for a couple weeks and see what happens. If the results are negligible, I’ll stop and then try the NAC for a couple weeks and see.

REPLY
@otter2154

Has anyone here had success taking NAC? I’ve read about many lung benefits (better breathing and reduced mucus, long-term). Interested in hearing about others’ experience.

Jump to this post

I have severe COPD, and am an Alpha-1 carrier (MZ). I don't have severe coughing and when I cough it is usually non-productive. I am not sure this would help me, but have sent a message to my wonderful, and very hard working Pulmonologist at Mayo in Rochester, Dr Alexander Niven and will update when he responds.

REPLY
Please sign in or register to post a reply.